Patrick Lujan, Executive Manager: Patrick grew up in a football family and would read the daily paper starting from the back page. He got his first taste in sports journalism in 1989 when he shadowed then-sports writer Eddie Siguenza to some All-District Basketball League games. Watching Joey ‘Pretzel’ Gogue go off for 60+ points for the Toto Blazers got him hooked!
Patrick went on to write for the Pacific Daily News while still in high school and later became the Sports Director for KUAM when he was only 21-years-old. Eventually, he would create and format both sports programs for Pacific News Center and the defunct Guam Newswatch.
He has met and/or interviewed pro legends and athletes such as Royce Gracie, Muggsy Bogues, Dick Butkus, Larry Fitzgerald, Tom Rathman, Wanderlei Silva, B.J. Penn, Chuck Liddell, Enson Inoue, Brandon Vera, Mark Munoz, Tyson Griffin, Vida Blue, A.J. Burnett, Bengie Molina, Spud Webb, Ron Harper, Bobby Jones, Jalen Rose, George Gervin, Channing Frye and Lenda Murray (8-time Ms. Olympia)…even Carlos Santana, though he doesn’t play a sport, but certainly a legend.
It is Patrick’s passion for sports that has led him to create Guam Sports Network. Hope you enjoy!
Robert Balajadia, Sports Director: Sports has been a huge part of Robert’s life influencing many decisions including wanting to pursue a career in sports journalism. He’s a 2008 grad from Father Duenas and a Communications major from UOG. Robert is arguably the biggest San Diego Chargers fan, but he’d have to compete with Omar Damian and Mike Willess for that honor.
Kobe Bryant is his idol/hero. He is a dedicated national sports fan and turned a long time hobby into a lasting profession. A bit of a shoe addict, his boss and colleagues never forget to tell him how ugly his new pair of Kobe’s are. Yet, he wears them anyway.
Robert got a taste of the local sports scene as a sports reporter for Guam Sports Watch. He says he would love to meet any superstar athlete.
Jay Leon Guerrero, Writer: Jay jumped on board the GSPN team in 2014 and brings 3 years of experience in sports journalism. He is the ultimate sports fanatic who went as far as traveling abroad to watch sporting events which include basketball games, baseball games, and 9 UFC’s fights.
A “silver and black” fan of the Oakland Raiders and the San Antonio Spurs, Leon Guerrero also plays basketball.
Jay is also a member of the Guam National Bowling team and has five gold medals and 13 perfect games under his resume. Jay, who is class of 95 FD alumnus, continues to represent Guam in international tournaments throughout the year.
He started writing because he has a passion for sports and continues to support local athletes. “I believe the media plays a big role in the development of athletes. When young athletes see their name(s) in my articles, it gives them a drive to continue playing/practicing sports which in turn keeps them away from trouble”.
Jesse Pinkston, Writer: She hails from the town of Attica, Kansas (population: 626). A place that has no stop lights, dirt roads and a rodeo every summer (now there’s a sport!). She moved to Guam in 2006 after graduating with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications with an emphasis in Sports Broadcasting from Kansas Wesleyan University.
She worked with Patrick at Pacific News Center’s sports department while modeling as well. Heck, she’s a tooth shy of six-feet! Jesse represented Guam in the recent Pacific Games for women’s volleyball. Believe it or not, she actually advanced to the Kansas state championships for discus in high school. She has a geek side as well. Jesse played tenor sax for seven years. Musician, sports journalist, model, volleyball player…what can’t she do?
Michael Cruz , Writer: Michael’s family has roots in Merizo and Anigua. Raised as a Military Brat, he lived on Guam from 1993-1995. He relocated to Texas in 1995 and now resides in Allen, TX. Michael enjoys watching sports, powerlifting, and eating at various restaurants (Lives within 10 minutes of the only L&L Hawaiian BBQ in Texas). His Goals for 2014 is to start on a graduate degree in Sports Management and see the Guam National Olympic Committee recognize a National Amercian Football Team.
Joey Blas, Photography: Joey is a proud father of two amazing daughters and he lives in the beautiful village of MTM. He is an amateur photographer and likes to cover sports and various types of venues. Joey has been playing sports since he was 7, played Tee Ball and football for the PEE WEE division. He Currently plays baseball and softball to keep himself busy and keep up with other sports. Represented GUAM Baseball in Palau, Saipan, and in the Mainland and received various medals.
Joey Started getting serious about photography four years ago when his kids started playing more competitive sports and figured that was the best way to learn sports photography. He has been learning a lot out on the field especially from Jesse Castro, Matt Weis, John Balbin, Alex Rivera and all the other photographers out there that share their knowledge and skills of photography.
Mike Nauta Jr., Writer: Driven with a passion for sports, Mike can be seen at almost any type of sporting event. Having gone from a multi-sport athlete in his younger years, one can find the southern native on the sidelines using his knowledge and experience to piece together a nice story or perhaps even coaching one of our island’s school volleyball teams. Mike has coached interscholastic sports at various schools to include: Inarajan Middle School, Saint Francis, Southern High, Notre Dame, Academy and more recently the Agueda Johnston Pirates. The 34-year old gives special thanks to his wife Monessa M.T. Nauta and his family for the never-ending support in all his endeavors and aspirations.
While enjoying the sports world and all it has to offer, Mike is known to be a huge San Francisco 49ers and Boston Celtics fan despite volleyball being his favorite sport. When asked where he learned the ins and outs of coaching, Mike responds with “My late Blaine F. Afaisen, he’s the guy who has shared many experiences with me and has pushed me to give nothing but my best and do it with love and passion.”
Mike teaches his athletes what he uses to keep him going and driven, that is: “IF YOU DON’T BELIEVE…YOU DON’T BELONG!”